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'Pause in Indo-Pak dialogue benefits terrorists'

By Rezaul H Laskar in Islamabad
July 14, 2009 14:58 IST
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Pakistan Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani on Tuesday said he would hold talks with his Indian counterpart Manmohan Singh on the margins of the Non-Aligned Movement summit in Egypt with an 'open mind' as he believed any 'pause' in bilateral dialogue would benefit terrorists.

"If talks were on pause, that benefited the terrorists," Gilani told reporters in Islamabad before embarking on a four-day visit to attend the NAM summit in the Egyptian resort of Sharm el-Sheikh.

"Both countries were moving in the right direction but because of the terror attack on Mumbai, there has been a pause in the composite dialogue," Gilani said.

He said his talks with Dr Singh, on the sidelines of the NAM summit, were aimed at restarting the stalled peace process. More interaction between the two countries will prove beneficial, Gilani added.

The foreign secretaries of the two countries will hold talks on Tuesday in Sharm el-Sheikh to chalk out the agenda for his meeting with Dr Singh, said Gilani. Dr Singh and he would also decide on 'the issues to be discussed' when they meet, Gilani added.

Pakistan believes in cordial relations with all countries, particularly its neighbours, he said. Gilani also said his visit to the NAM summit was 'extremely important' as he would meet several world leaders.

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Rezaul H Laskar in Islamabad
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